Title: Worth It.
Characters: Merlin, Arthur
Summary: No man is worth your tears. That was what he had said. Like usual, he was wrong.
Warnings: Character death.
Word Count: 357
Author Notes: Didn't quite anticipate something so angsty for my first time doing this, will have to make it happier next time!
No man is worth your tears.
That was what Arthur had told him years ago, when he was nothing more than a prince wanting to prove himself. Neither of them quite managed to stick to that – Arthur when Uther had died and then Merlin himself when Gaius had just not woken up one morning.
His lover had held him for days, not trying to stop Merlin from weeping for his lost mentor. He had never said that one shouldn’t cry, but that one wasn’t necessarily worth the tears and grief. It should have been a celebration of their life, not mourning the passing.
But now, the raging storm above being dragged into existence by his wild magic, Merlin was realising just how wrong Arthur was. As usual a fond voice in the back of his mind whispered, but Merlin pushed it away. He was focusing on keeping the rain off the King’s collapsed form, body wrapped around Arthur’s as he tried to force his magic out and into his love’s. He had to try and stop the life from slipping out of him like this. He was meant to be a powerful warlock, there had to be something he could do!
“Stop thinking...” A hoarse voice croaked, and Merlin stared down through watery eyes to see the normally vibrant blue orbs looking back at him. There was nothing vibrant about Arthur’s eyes now, clouded with pain and acceptance. “And kiss me.”
For once in his life, Merlin did as he was told. He could feel Arthur smiling into it, a hand reaching up to cup the back of his neck awkwardly. Suddenly, it fell with an audible thud back to the muddy ground, his fingers twitching in pain for a moment before they too fell still.
There was no answer, but the smile was still on his face even as the warmth seeped from the fallen King.
“You were wrong, you know...” Merlin whispered, inwardly swearing revenge on Mordred even as shaking hands stroked Arthur’s cheeks gently. “There is one man worth my tears.”
With those words, Merlin folded himself over Arthur’s fallen body, and sobbed.